Skip to content

Potential dropped objects in frame pockets

What happened?

The Marine Safety Forum (MSF) has published Safety Alert 18-20 on Potential Dropped Objects in Frame Pockets. When preparing a heavy lift to be discharged from an offshore supply vessel to an offshore installation, the vessel’s AB’s were carrying out final checks, which included checks for any potential dropped objects. During these checks, they discovered some debris within the frame pocket. The items were estimated to weigh approximately 1kg.

What went wrong? What were the causes?

Cargo checks onshore failed to spot the items before the lift had been loaded onto the PSV. This was apparently due to the lift frame positioning on the trailer which may have hampered the checks at the gantry.

What actions were taken? What lessons were learned?

  • The potential dropped objects were removed from the pocket and the lift was safely and successfully discharged to the offshore installation;
  • This alert highlights the importance of final checks on all lifts prior to discharge offshore even though there had been previous checks onshore.

The full MSF safety alert can be found here.

The MSF notes that further information and guidance on the checking of cargo items for potential dropped objects can be found in ‘Best Practice for the Safe Packing & Handling of Cargo to & from Offshore Locations’ available at

Dropped objects or potential dropped objects from cargo are a frequent cause of incidents. Users of IMCA Safety Flashes can search the IMCA Safety Flash database themselves using any search word. Please browse to and enter text in the search box.

Members may wish to refer to the following:

Safety Event

Published: 10 September 2018
Download: IMCA SF 20/18

Relevant life-saving rules:
IMCA Safety Flashes
Submit a Report

IMCA Safety Flashes summarise key safety matters and incidents, allowing lessons to be more easily learnt for the benefit of all. The effectiveness of the IMCA Safety Flash system depends on Members sharing information and so avoiding repeat incidents. Please consider adding [email protected] to your internal distribution list for safety alerts or manually submitting information on incidents you consider may be relevant. All information is anonymised or sanitised, as appropriate.

IMCA’s store terms and conditions ( apply to all downloads from IMCA’s website, including this document.

IMCA makes every effort to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the data contained in the documents it publishes, but IMCA shall not be liable for any guidance and/or recommendation and/or statement herein contained. The information contained in this document does not fulfil or replace any individual’s or Member's legal, regulatory or other duties or obligations in respect of their operations. Individuals and Members remain solely responsible for the safe, lawful and proper conduct of their operations.